How To Extract Code from Tutorial Images

Let us think about a scenario, you are a budding programmer, and you are looking for tutorials to help you tackle an annoying coding problem.

You find a good tutorial, and you look at the code. You want to try it out, but then find that you cannot copy the code because it is an image. Now, you are stumped.

Typing the code manually is risky because there are too many places where you could make an error and not know. Besides, sometimes the code is too long to copy by hand. So, how can you copy the code?

If that is indeed you, then do not worry, there is a great way to extract that code from the images. It is also an easy way that does not cost you anything. It is much faster than copying the code by hand and there is almost no chance of errors as well. So, let us see how you can do that right now.

How to Extract Code from Images

Essentially, what is going to do is copy the image with the code in it and paste it into a special type of online tool. We are talking about an image-to-text converter. You will learn what is an image-to-text converter and how to use it in the rest of this article, so keep on reading.

1. Find an Image to Text Converter

Extracting text from images is done with the help of image-to-text converters. These are tools that utilize OCR (optical character recognition) for identifying text in an image and then converting that text into a digitally editable form.

If you are a student, then it will be important to you that the tools you use to extract text from image are free, or very cheap. To find a tool that fulfills these requirements, do the following:

  • Open a browser.
  • Navigate to Google (or any other search engine of your preference)
  • Type “get a text from an image” or something else along those lines.
  • On the results page, check out the first five tools and see which one is free.

How to extract code from images

This may take some time, but it will not be long. It will take you only a couple of minutes to find a tool to your liking. The tip about the first five is not a hard and fast rule. If you don’t find a tool that fulfills your needs in the top five, then you are free to check out other tools as well. We only mentioned the top five because they are usually the best results. Anyway, once you are done with that, move on to the next step.

2. Get the Image and Preprocess it if Necessary

Now, that is over, you need to copy the images of the code and input them into the text extractor. In most cases, you should be able to just copy the image directly and paste it into the tool. However, sometimes there are complications such as the ones below.

  • The website does not allow users to copy anything, i.e., the context menu is disabled.
  • The tool you are using does not support copy-pasting images.

In this case, you can do two things. For the first scenario, you can take a screenshot of the webpage using the built-in options. For Windows, just use the snipping tool, and if you are on MAC press “shift+command+4/5” to take the screenshot, or open the screenshot app.

Many browsers have the “web select/capture” feature that lets them select and copy areas of a webpage even if they don’t allow it. Microsoft Edge has this feature, and you can use extensions to add it to other browsers as well.

For the second scenario, just save the screenshots to your device and upload them to the tool. Make sure that the format you save them in is compatible with the tool you want to use. Also, make sure that the images are clean, i.e., there is no noise, the images are not skewed, and the colors do not get camouflaged against the background. This is known as preprocessing.

3. Input the Image, and Extract the Text

Well, now it is just simple. Input your image to the text extractor in the manner you see fit and extract the text. Some tools will do it automatically, while others may ask you for a prompt.

4. Review the Output and Edit if Necessary

You need to check if the tool extracted the code properly. OCR technology is not perfect, and sometimes there are errors in recognizing text. There may be typos or some punctuation may be recognized incorrectly.

That’s why you need to compare the output to the images and make sure that the texts are the same. Of course, even if you do not find a mistake yourself, your code compiler will, so don’t worry too much about it.

Another thing that can happen is that the formatting of the text is changed which is very detrimental for coding. So, you need to check whether the code text was recognized correctly and was its formatting had changed or not. If you do find any discrepancies, you will need to manually edit the code to correct them.

Normally, this is not an issue in high-end tools. They preserve the formatting and keep it as close as possible to its image counterpart. But some lower-end tools (such as free ones that don’t require registration) can botch the formatting. So be careful about that.

And after that, you are done. This may seem like a lot of things to do, but once you actually get down to it, it is quite easy and quick. As such, it takes less time than manually writing the code down.


In this way, you can extract code from tutorial images without having to manually write it down. The steps we listed were to find a tool, get the image, input it, extract the text, and check it for errors. Very simple, straightforward, and convenient for copying code.

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